At 9 a.m. on September 15th, an entrance ceremony was held for the NEU freshmen of 2020 in the Zhixing Plaza, and attended by, among others, Sheng Xilian, the Party building liaison officer of the Ministry of Education, Tu Xinggang, the commander of the Military Training Regiment and a colonel in Army 31694, NEU leaders Xiong Xiaomei, Zhao Ji, Zhang Guochen, Sun Lei, Wang Jinahua and Feng Xiating, as well as Wang Hui, a standing member of the NEU Party Committee and the head of the Organization Department, the persons in charge of the schools and departments concerned, and the military training instructors. All the undergraduate and postgraduate freshmen of 2020 were also present at the ceremony. Vice President Wang Jianhua presided over the ceremony.
The entrance ceremony kicked off with the majestic national anthem.
President Zhao Ji extended a warm welcome to the freshmen of 2020 on behalf of NEU. Zhao Ji shared his insights with all the freshmen in his speech titled “Let’s absorb Strength from the Depth of the Junction of the Greater Self and Universal Love”. He said, “2020 is an eventful year. Faced with the sudden outbreak of COVID-19, the Party Central Committee, led by Comrade Xi Jinping, made overall planning and decisions resolutely. General Secretary Xi Jinping served as the commander and made arrangements personally on the principle of people first and life first, with extraordinary measures taken to handle the unexpected incident, rapidly starting an all-out battle, a general war and a blocking action to prevent and control the epidemic. After hard work and great efforts, we won the national struggle against COVID-19. While preparing for the college entrance examination, you, the freshmen of 2020, encountered the epidemic. Gratifyingly, you didn’t surrender yourselves to the difficult situation, but lived up to your conscience. With your unremitting efforts, firm confidence and outstanding performance, you have finally passed the examination, successfully entering your desirable university. In this huge test of pestilence, the 1.4 billion Chinese people are united as one and help one another in overcoming difficulties. All of them are excellent test takers. It is precisely the countless ‘small selves’ that make up the ‘greater self’. It is the ‘little love’ that forms the ‘universal love’. Because of all this, we have finally won a temporary victory in the war against the pestilence at home. It is, too, because of this, that we can now have a valuable gathering at the unusual entrance ceremony on campus.”
Zhao Ji added, “NEU is a university that was founded 97 years ago, keeps up the glorious tradition all the time and has universal love for everybody. The university badge, including the white mountain and black water and the picture of hexagram Gen; the exciting melody of the university song, including the ‘hidden love for the university, hometown, country and human beings’; the cultural gene contained in the university motto that “Self-Improvement and Unity of Knowledge and Action”…all has been deeply rooted in generations of young students’ hearts, making them patriotic and dedicated to the country. You, the freshmen of 2020, are the inheritors and new creators of NEU’s history and culture. Your youthful dreams and growth stories have been woven together with the brilliant picture scroll of NEU, converging with our stage goal of building NEU into a first-class university. May you have greater self in your heart, serve the country worthily and forge ahead in a down-to-earth manner; may you have universal love in your heart, brighten your feelings, and pursue excellence with an innovation attitude. At the convergent point of the “greater self” and ‘universal love’ is the essence of ‘loving the university, loving the hometown, loving the motherland, and loving human beings’. Here is the mission that NEU has of building itself into a first-class university. Here is a grand vision for the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. Also, here is high hope for building a community with a shared future for mankind.” Zhao Ji sincerely hoped that the freshmen would take the times as their background and NEU as their stage to act out their youth story and have a better life!
Cong Dehong, a professor at the College of Information Science and Engineering, saluted the freshmen and extended a warm welcome to them on behalf of the teaching faculty. Cong Dehong expressed his hope that the freshmen of 2020 would grow into determined dream-catchers, members of NEU that could do everything in a pragmatic and down-to-earth approach, and work hard with the pioneering spirit. He said, “You are high-profile freshmen. You withstood the test of the epidemic before entering NEU; you will witness the development of NEU when China is building a moderately prosperous society in all respects; as you grow up here, we will have the opportunity to celebrate the 100th birthday of NEU.” Cong Dehong sincerely hoped that the freshmen would make the best self out of follow-up study and life to glorify NEU and sing fortissimo for the development of NEU and the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.
Gao Jingbo, a doctoral student at the School of Material Science and Engineering, made a speech on behalf of the students at NEU. He introduced his 8 years of learning and growing experience at NEU and shared with the freshmen his thoughts about three important aspects. The first is “patriotism.” Young people must know how to love their country. Great strategic results have been achieved in the fight against the COVID-19, making us feel proud as Chinese. The second is “persistence”. Scientific research must be carried out with a 100% persistent spirit. The third is “gratitude”. Thank NEU for providing us with a broad space for training and a comprehensive stage for practice. Youth is shone when one tempers himself/herself. Life is sublimated when one struggles. May you gain a strong sense of pride, accomplishment and belonging in NEU, and become an outstanding new generation of ‘NEU people’”.
Zhao Yuhang, a student in the Experimental Class of Humanities, School of Marxism, gave a speech on behalf of the freshmen. Zhao Yuhang said, “The sudden epidemic in 2020 affected our normal study and life. It is after experiencing too many difficulties and overcoming too much impossibility that we are able to meet one another in the white mountain and black water of NEU. As a member of NEU, we should uphold three character backgrounds and spiritual attitudes, and dedicate ourselves to the country, with the world in view, to further promote patriotism; we should regulate our behavior for the truth, and cheer ourselves up to show our elegance and talent; we should cultivate ourselves for life, and forge ahead to shoulder the responsibility of the times. We, the freshmen of 2020, will witness the centenary of NEU. Let’s integrate our personal dreams into the torrent of the great era and strive to fulfill the Chinese dream of great national renewal.”
The ceremony was rounded off with all the teachers and students’ singing of the university song.